Keep your ear to the ground and use the following as your alert system: Your own data and ranking tracking Round table on search engines SEOs who focus on algo updates (like Gabe) Third-party search visibility tools Twitter Chat in the SEO Community Forums for webmasters SEO weather tracking tools (such as Mozcast) It's important to note the date you saw a drastic change in your rankings and traffic, as you may be able to correlate this with the updates noted by the sources above. Major updates still happen every few months.
Latest Major Google Search Algorithm Updates How To Prepare For Battle With Updates You need to have the right data and tools to help you assess whether updates have affected your site. Use third-party data to complement your own. Collect and track your niche jewelry retouching service data too (SEMrush is Gabe's favorite tool for seeing this data from competitor sites). Be proactive and not reactive; try to spot possible problems before they spiral out of control. Also, be sure to track your rankings. Select a solid set of keywords from your niche.
You need more than just your “top 10”. Also follow your competitors. You are looking for movement across an entire niche, not just your own site. Use tools like SEMrush, STAT, RankRanger, Moz or others to do this. But no matter how hard you try, you can't keep up with the rankings of the entire web. However, tools like SEMRush, SearchMetrics, and Sistrix monitor thousands of sites across the web and can therefore more accurately display major ranking fluctuations.